2 min read
Bear me out... I think I've figured something out, and it had everything to do with license plates.
On the way back from lunch, I saw someone with one of my states "Patriot" vanity plates, and a bumper sticker supporting a Republican candidate. And I mused to myself... why don't I ever see patriot plates with Bernie stickers? And I struck on a dichotomy which I hadn't noticed before: your average 'patriot' supports the IDEA of America where your vocal leftish people the IDEAL of America.
The right envisions Mayberry where the government is well meaning but buffoonish, and they go home at night.
The left envisions the government doing what the constitution says it ought and takes care of their neighbors.
The right wants an idyllic world, where we're the best and outsiders don't get it, but that's fine because we're the best.
The left wants the ideals which are enshrined in the constitution applied to everyone equally, and we are still the land of the immigrant and those yearning masses can be free.
And then I realised: I don't think that Mayberry ever had to worry about the Cold War going hot, despite being a show from the late fifties and early sixties. You know, when the world was feeling exetensial dread at the possiblity of total annhiliation when Kruschev felt that Nixon was looking at him funny(or vice versa), and decided to end it all. According to twenty minutes on Wikipedia (everyone's favourite reliable source of knowledge), there was only one episode which has anything to do with the Soviets, and they intentionally made the show feel like it was in the 30s (you know, when America First was last popular).
And because Mayberry didn't live in the existential-horror world of the 60s spy thriller, (Len Deighton, John le Carre, et al) where the reader knew that if the good guy screwed up, the world was really in peril from unknowable horrors. They never had to worry about consequences: it was all a minor misunderstanding, or the baddies would get shipped out of town never to be heard from again.
Mayberry intentionally ignores the outside world, and that's what's wrong with the world today.
Or that's my thoughts.